French manufacturer's Divine DS concept car, shown off at Paris motor show, symbolises the future of the fast-growing DS brand
Richard Bremner Autocar
2 October 2014

This is the new Citroën Divine DS concept car, which symbolises the future styling direction of the DS brand. It has made its public debut at the Paris motor show.

Described as having "avant garde design" and "visible technologies, refinement and a balance between comfort and dynamics," by DS boss Yves Bonnefont, the car is intended to signal the future brand and design direction of DS rather than preview any specific new model.

Perhaps unexpectedly, its basic concept is the straightforward C-segment hatchback. "It’s the most important segment," said exterior designer Frederick Subirou, adding that the Divine DS's "muscular, sinewy and voluptuous surfaces, punctuated by sharp, sweeping lines" describe the sculptural direction the company is heading in.  

Important style elements on the concept include the lack of a rear window, a series of sharp-edged geometric shapes instead characterising the rear-end of the model. DS officials say they're "serious" about a car with a windowless rear. In the Divine DS a rear-view camera substitutes, with its image projected onto a rear-view mirror-shaped screen found in the usual place. 

The rear window and interior mirror are examples of the benefits of designing the exterior and interior of this concept simultaneously, said exterior design leader Bertrand Dantec, because the technology providing the panoramic digital rear-view mirror allows for the lack of rear window.

Surprisingly, though, conventional door mirrors remain. Ignore the scissor and coach door arrangements – they are pure show car, with no production intent.

That the grille seems a little conventional in its shape is driven by the need for internationally recognised canons of design, said Subirou. The nose that will adorn the cars of the new DS brand needs to be as acceptable in China, where the brand is growing fast, as it is in Europe. 

The French manufacturer has partnered with jeweller Swarovski and embroidery company Lesage to create the luxurious cabin.

Inside, DS is suggesting three styles of interior finish, called Male, Parisienne Chic and Fatale Punk.

Parisienne Chic, with its embroidered door panels, pleated silk and rich leather intended to evoke the haute couture world. Male is about carbonfibre, while Fatale Punk features quilted, jewellery studded leather and a shimmering Swarovski Crystal fabric.

The dashboard and centre console take the same highly sculpted theme used in the Citroën DS5 a dramatic stage further with its sweeping forms and asymmetric design.

The Divine DS is front-wheel drive and is powered by a turbocharged direct-injection 1.6 THP petrol engine developing 267bhp at 6000rpm and maximum torque of 243lb ft between 1900 and 5500rpm. The engine emits 145g/km of CO2.

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Our Verdict

DS4

The DS 4 is a high-riding hatchback, but for all its maker's claims to the contrary, its too much like the standard C4

5 September 2014
Presumably poised next to an SM and a DS to highlight that these new DSs are all about fashion and not design and engineering. They are all about looks over substance. Fashion in it's transience, rather than design in it's integrity and honesty. More disposable 'look' than enduring style. What a legacy for Citroen to misuse. Like printing a picture of Dior haute-couture on a T-shirt and then trying to pass it off as actual Dior.

5 September 2014
Forget the C range and cheap vans with windows, leaving them to the pedestrian Peugeot. This is the sort of car that should characterise Citroen.

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